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PUBH 8050 Week 6 Assignment: Week 6 assignment

Goals & objectives

This week’s assignment asks you to search the Internet and scholarly research for examples of Canadian upstream interventions” that can be put forth as examples of either effective or ineffective efforts to improve population health. Based on that research, you are asked to consider things like health inequities, determinants of health, and social policies surrounding the intervention you select.

The Walden University Library can help!  On this page you will find guidance on how to choose useful databases, identify good search terms, and conduct an effective search.  Then, you can draw your conclusions about the state of research for the intervention you have chosen, and complete the assigned tasks. Keep in mind that you can go back to the literature and adjust your search as you learn more about your topic.

Identify your search terms

Before you begin searching, pick out the main concepts from the assignment details. Good search terms will often be the suggested nouns. It can be useful to choose jargon or terms specific to your field, but that may not always be possible. In the case of this assignment, most of the key search terms are stated clearly, although you may need to adjust them to retrieve relevant results. To learn more about picking a searchable topic, please see our guide:


You can also try some of these suggestions, focusing on appropriate combinations:





Population Health

Public Health

Health Disparities

Health Inequities

Disparities of Health

Health Care [Note: Some authors use health care, while others use healthcare. Searching for either form of the term will help to bring back all of the relevant articles.]

Select a Database

Recommended databases for scholarly literature on this topic cross a range of disciplines from the medical sciences to the social and political sciences. A good multidisciplinary database such as Academic Search Complete may be the best choice in this search as well as ProQuest Health & Medical Collection or SocINDEX with Full Text.

Explore various databases by subject by visiting the Library homepage and using the Subject Resources box.

Subject areas that may be of interest include Health sciences, Nursing, Human services, Public Policy & Administration, and Social Work.

Conduct a search

Here is a search that you can do in the Academic Search Complete database to find articles published in peer-reviewed journals on Canadian upstream interventions and population health disparities:

Note: To learn how to access the Academic Search Complete database, please visit this QuickAnswer: How do I find a specific database?

1. Once you are in the Academic Search Complete database, enter your keywords in the search boxes.

First search box:

Canada AND Health AND Intervention

Note: Connecting these terms with AND tells the database to search for all of these terms.

Second search box:

Population OR Public

Note: Connecting these terms with OR tells the database to search for either term.

Third search box:

Disparities OR Inequities

Here is what your search boxes should look like:


2. Below the search boxes, under Limit your results, click the boxes under Full Text and Scholarly (Peer Reviewed) Journals.

Click to see this image in context.


3. Click on the Search button to run your search.

4. You should now have a list of scholarly, peer-reviewed articles on your topic. To open an article, click on the PDF Full Text link.


Test yourself:

Search the scholarly web

Google Scholar is a specialized search engine from Google that searches scholarly, but not necessarily peer-reviewed, literature on the Internet. 

Google Scholar can be helpful in finding scholarly literature and relevant documents from government groups and organizations. You can use Google Scholar through the Walden Library to see if the full text of an article is available in the Library.


The strategy below in Google Scholar will search the scholarly web for documents related to the topic.

This is also an opportunity to explore specific word combinations using quotes and trimming the topic. For instance the following search may be a good one to try in Google Scholar and even Google using strict evaluation methods.


In the Google Scholar search box, type:

"upstream intervention" +Canada

Note: Using quotes will keep two keywords together to search them as one search term and using the plus sign (+) in Google in front of a keyword will make it required in the results.

To learn more about searching Google Scholar, please see our guide:


To learn more about evaluating what you find using Google Scholar, or any online search engine, please see our guide:

Assess results & search again

Take a look at the results of your database searches. Are you finding a few relevant articles? Many relevant articles? No relevant articles? (Hint: If you don't find any relevant articles with your first database search, you may wish to try a few more searches using other suggested keywords or different keyword combinations, to be sure you're not missing useful results. You might also try different databases and search a specific intervention once you identify it.)